City 7 TV invests in automated transmission facility

Dubai-based station completes first phase of million-dollar project.

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Dubai-based TV channel, City 7 TV has undertaken a multi-phased project that will include an automated transmission facility at its headquarters in Dubai Media City.

The new facility, centred on the Vectorbox digital broadcast system, will enable City 7 TV to transmit high-quality digital domain signals on Nilesat. With this US $1million project, City 7 TV will also explore the potential of developing new revenue channels for the TV station by offering dynamic retail branding opportunities to commercial outlets in the UAE and the GCC.

“Phase 1 of this project has already been completed,” says Kalyan Acharya, associate head of broadcast operations, City 7 TV. “The basic application here is the Vectorbox, which was a perfect fit for our requirements. At the end of August, a lot of things will change for City 7 TV. For one, our playout, which was previously being managed through Ten Sports, will now be handled from our end. Secondly, we plan to put in routers from Network Electronics to integrate our broadcast and IT operations. An important part of this project will also be the installation of the Micro X Duet from Chyron Graphics to enable us to provide dynamic graphics and interactive services to our viewers. Since this is a local TV channel, we want our viewers to keep coming back to us for breaking news, updates on climate, business and everything else.”

Acharya added that the channel is looking to introduce something to the region in terms of advertising. “We hope to provide interactive local dynamic branding for retailers who want to promote their products and this project will help us to achieve that. This could be done either through advertising, information and so on,” he adds.

The automated and networked transmission facility was installed and commissioned with the help of City 7’s in-house broadcast and IT engineering team. Phase 2 of the project is scheduled for completion at the end of this month.

Speaking about the channel’s long term strategy, Ron Kapadia, executive director & chief operating officer of City7 TV added that the channel was also looking at other potential distribution streams such as the web, mobile, DVB-H, broadband and DTT. “Future directions for the channel include expansion of the business covering all aspects of TV and film production, niche channels catering to specific nationality-based resident segments across the UAE and all possible forms of TV and film related support mechanisms,” Kapadia commented.

The TV channel is also in discussion with an Indian company, Monarch, about deploying a virtual studio at its Dubai facility. The virtual solution will enable the channel to give its viewers more varied backgrounds for its programmes.

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